In the history of the English garden the Royal Garden at Kew has played an…
Do you sometimes feel like your garden is too big? There just seems a lot to do.
This idea of too much hits me now in May when I am working in the garden to clean up from winter, weed, transplant, and fill pots for the summer.
I have built my garden over the past twenty-five years, a bit at a time.
Rochester seedsman James Vick (1818-1882) once raised the same question.
He wrote in his seed catalog of 1872: “The great difficulty with American gardens is that they are too large, and not sufficiently cared for. If we gave the same amount of labor on a quarter of an acre that we now expend on an acre, the result would be much more satisfactory.”
Vick recognized that a gardener needs a sense of satisfaction in the work of gardening. One way to achieve that is to have less to cultivate.
Somehow I feel Vick’s insight is just as appropriate for a gardener today as it was in the 1880s.